Pharmaceutical Management: Our Impact

 {Photo credit: Jiro Ose, SCMS}An Ethiopian warehouse after support from SCMS, USAID and PEPFAR.Photo credit: Jiro Ose, SCMS

The Ethiopian government is undertaking a bold initiative to ensure that medicinal supply and access are available throughout the country. A major challenge is reaching a population whose majority lives in rural areas. Through a series of centralized and regional hubs, this initiative aims to serve thousands of health centers all over the country and overcome the hurdle to reaching patients. Achieving this aim is a complex undertaking, which is becoming increasingly more so as the diversity and volume of medicines regularly expands.

{Photo credit: MSH/Yvonne Otieno}Photo credit: MSH/Yvonne Otieno

“Medicine can be poisonous if it is contaminated. It can poison my clients, who will keep returning to the facility. To prevent contamination of the medicines we receive, our facility has invested in proper storage facilities,” says Mr. Andrew Mabele, a clinical officer responsible for screening outpatients, reviewing lab results, and providing HIV and tuberculosis patient follow-up treatment in the Kabichbich Health Centre.

The manager of a community health center dispenses family planning commodities in Mali. {Photo credit: MSH.}

By Dr. Constance Toure, Dr. Suzanne Diarra, Dr. Modibo Diarra, Dr. Yssouf Diallo Access to family planning methods has been challenging in many parts of Mali – even before the US had to shut off direct aid to the Malian government. With funding from the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the Systems for Improved Access to Pharmaceuticals and Services (SIAPS) program, has been supporting Mali’s Ministry of Health through its Direction de la Pharmacie et des Médicaments (DPM) to estimate contraceptive needs.

The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information and Communication, Dr. Bitange Ndemo. {Photo credit: MSH.}Photo credit: MSH.

Monitoring and reporting of adverse drug reactions (ADRs) and poor-quality human medicines has gone digital in Kenya. Medical experts and patients can now detect, assess, and report unpleasant reactions to pharmaceutical products in real time to the Pharmacy and Poisons Board’s (PPB) National Pharmacovigilance Centre.

Afghan pharmacy students listen intently to a lecture during recent trainings. {Photo credit: MSH staff.}Photo credit: MSH staff.

Access to quality medicines and appropriate use of those medicines are critical to good patient care and a functioning health system.

DRC-IHP staff loads a truck for the journey to Dekese. {Photo credit: MSH.}Photo credit: MSH.

The health zone of Dekese is located in a remote part of Kasaï Occidental province in Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Approximately 600 km—327 miles—from the nearest city of Kananga, the roads leading to Dekese are in disrepair, overgrown with trees and blocked by rivers. These conditions complicate the daunting task of delivering critical medicines and other health care supplies to ensure the health of its 131,507 inhabitants, especially its mothers and children.

The trained medicine dispenser/proprietor signs paperwork to receive the official AMS logo for her store. {Photo credit: Arthur Loryoun/MSH Liberia}Photo credit: Arthur Loryoun/MSH Liberia

The Liberia Ministry of Health and Social Welfare (MOHSW), Liberia Medicine and Health Products Regulatory Authority (LMHRA) and the Pharmacy Board of Liberia (PBL) marked the successful launch of the Accredited Medicine Store (AMS) program in Liberia on February 12, 2013. The Sustainable Drug Seller Initiatives (SDSI) program supports the AMS initiative in Liberia through a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to Management Sciences for Health (MSH). 

A supervisor from the National Malaria Control Program explains the emergency distribution and the new reporting system to the chiefs of health centers in a district of Conakry. (Photo: MSH/SIAPS Guinea)A supervisor from the National Malaria Control Program explains the emergency distribution and the new reporting system to the chiefs of health centers in a district of Conakry. (Photo: MSH/SIAPS Guinea)

A supervisor from the National Malaria Control Program explains the emergency distribution and the new reporting system to the chiefs of health centers in a district of Conakry. (Photo: MSH/SIAPS Guinea)In Guinea, malaria is a common threat year-round, especially during the rainy season that lasts from May to October. It affects everyone, but for children under five years of age, appropriate and immediate treatment could mean the difference between life and death.

Mr. Sello Lechesa, a pharmacy technician and RxSolution user in the ART pharmacy at Maluti Adventist Hospital. {Photo credit: MSH staff/Lesotho}Photo credit: MSH staff/Lesotho

Lesotho’s pharmaceutical sector faced two formidable challenges: the unreliable supply of essential medicines and the unknown quality of medicines circulating in the country. Inefficiencies within the supply chain system were at the root of both problems, specifically weak information management systems that did not support decision-making in the supply chain.

Baby Victor and his mother. {Photo credit: Y. Otieno, MSH/Kenya}Photo credit: Y. Otieno, MSH/Kenya

Around 11 in the morning, mothers start streaming into the health facility. Baby Victor’s mother has brought him today for a routine immunization, but she’s also concerned about his lack of appetite and high fever. The nurses recommend that one-year-old Victor be tested for malaria.Thanks to a malaria rapid diagnostic test (RDT) kit, Victor’s test results come back in just half an hour.

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